1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

When you learn a song via tab

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by i like tictacs, Jul 9, 2004.

  1. Now, when I learn a song that uses the notes, say, in this order: BBBF#F#AB, in my head, as I play, I'll say those notes. Now, when I learn a song via tab, say, the tab is:


    I'll say the numbers in my head. Does anyone else do this, or am I hampering myself by not saying the notes? I mean, I know the notes and a good deal of theory, so if someone just says "play AGF#BCDA" I can do it, no problem. It just seems like a nuisance to have these numbers in my head when I play. Anyone else do this? Anything to help stop it? I mean, for the tab i posted above, BGAF#, so on...I know the notes, I try to say them in my head but I go back to saying the numbers in my head. Get what I'm saying?
  2. CJK84


    Jan 22, 2004
    Maria Stein, OH

    I get what you're saying - you silently recite the fret numbers in your head and you're wondering if it would be better to recite the notes.

    I suggest neither.

    Instead, recite the step numbers . The tab you provide looks like the key of G.

    Thus, I'd say to myself "3-1-2- ..." because the pattern starts with the 3rd step of the G major scale, then follows with the root, then the 2nd step, and so on.

    There are several advantages to this. For one, if you ever need to play this song in a different key, the frets and notes will change (and you'll be forced to make a sizable adaptation), but the step numbers will remain the same!

    When I play, I always "recite" the step numbers in my head and my skill at memorizing and, when needed, transposing fairly intricate lines is strong.

    Good luck.
  3. That's an excellent suggestion. I'm going to try it for awhile. Never thought of that.